Playwright : Pt. Natharam Sharma Gaur
Director : Dr. Umesh Chand Sharma
Group : Sri Sri Narhari Seva Sansthan, Vrindavan, U.P.
Language : Hindi
Duration: 90 mins
The story of Satyavan and Savitri, in Indian mythology has left a deep impact on the mass. This is the best story of ‘Pativrata dharm’. When Savitri, the only child of King Ashwapati of Bhadra country, reached her youth, a suitable groom was searched for her, but no prince was found worthy of Savitri. Seeing Satyavan, the son of King Dyumtsen, whose kingdom had been usurped by a neighboring king, and who lived in a hut in the forest with his wife, Queen Sadhvi, Savitri proposed to him. Though Sage Narada warns Savitri’s father that Satyavan has only 1 more year left to live, Satyavan and Savitri get married due to Savitri’s unwavering determination. After one year passed, one day while cutting woods from the tree, Satyavan felt pain. Savitri sits with her husband’s head on her lap. Yamdoots return after being impressed by her ‘Pativrat’. Then Yamraj himself comes to take his life. Savitri also starts following Yamraj. Impressed by her tenacity, loyalty and devotion, when Yamraj asks her to ask for boon, she asks for her father-in-law’s eye sight be back as the first boon, the return of their kingdom as the second boon and as the third boon, for herself, she asks for having 100 sons. Yamraj says – it will happen like this. On this Savitri said that you are taking my husband away, how will I be the mother of sons? In the end, keeping his promise, Yamraj returns Satyavan’s life. In this way, Savitri snatches her husband back from the hands of death by her chastity and Pativrata Dharma.
Nautanki Satyavan-Savitri is a very assertive composition, composed in folk theater drama style of North India. So far, it has been staged in various regions of the country by the eminent artistes, but the more often, this outdoor drama is staged and is seen by the audience, the more it appears in new surroundings. This Nautanki, full of lofty expressions, has been invited by the National School of Drama for performance in the 22nd Bharat Rang Mahotsav 2023. All our actors are very excited. The audience and the artistes and our organization, will all be specially benefited by the performance being presented. Being Impressed by the theme of this story, based on devotion and emotion, even today, every year the festival of Vat Savitri Vrat is celebrated with great enthusiasm on the new moon day (Amavasya) of Jyeshtha month, by the married women of North India, and on the full moon day (Poornima) of Jyeshtha month, by the married women of South India. Iti Shubham…
Dr. Umesh Chand Sharma was born in Vrindavan, District Mathura U.P. on 12 August 1956 in the family of Shri Madhav Prasad Sharma and Smt. Sushila Devi. He completed his M.A. in Hindi Literature and Philosophy, and Ph.D. in Vrindavan itself. After serving as Head of the Hindi Department in Vrindavan’s Sanskrit College for 30 years, retired from there. He has helped many, complet research work based on the stories of Braj region’s folk drama, and other genres like Rasleela and Bhagat, Swang, Nautanki etc. and has presented Nautanki on stage. Along with this, has done writing work on Nautanki, Swang etc. In 1993, he established Brajlok Art and Craft Museum in Vrindavan. Along with organizing seminars on Rasleela and Nautanki subjects, many plays were staged, in which ‘Mrichchikatikam’, written by Shudrak and Mohan Rakesh’s ‘Ashadha Ka Ek Din’ staged in collaboration with U.P. Sanskrit Academy are prominent ones. ‘Bhakti-Darshan aur Sahitya’, ‘Kamadhyatma’, ‘Braj Ka Bhava Bhoogol’ written by him have recently been published by the National Book Trust, New Delhi. At present he is serving as the Braj culture specialist with U.P. Braj Teerth Vikas Parishad, Mathura where he is making special contribution to the genres of Braj folk theatre.
Pt. Natharam Sharma Gaur was born on 14 January 1874 in Dariapur village near Hathras. His father’s name was Pandit Bhagirath and mother’s name was Mrs. Indira. He was a born artiste of music genre. Ustad Inderman made him study art-skills in Swang style. At the age of 16, Pandit Natharam Gaur laid the foundation stone of the Swang Akhara in Hathras jointly with Chiranji Lal ji. With this unique genre, rich in amazing style, not only he adorned the theater in the entire Indian provinces, but also hoisted the flag of the native culture in foreign countries as well. He was also honoured with gold and silver medals several times in the field of Nautanki. His singing of Nautanki, and accompanying acting was so powerful that the audience used to become engrossed in emotions. Apart from this, there is abundant Sangeet literature created by him on religious, cultural, social and mythological subjects. He also had his own printing press. He caused, the sun of Kanpur Nautanki rise. In the Hathras style provided by him, the conversation used to happen in verse only. It is classically ornate. The intensity of singing here, the ups and downs of alap and the inclusion of classical ragas is incomparable.
Sri Sri Narhari Seva Sansthan has been continuously working for the last 29 years on various forms of folk culture and art of Braj. The group has organized many seminars of international level on folk dramas, 10 workshops on Nautanki and Rasleela have also been organized by the Sansthan. The Sansthan also publishes its monthly magazine ‘Braj Lok Sampada’. This magazine publishes research oriented articles on the contexts of Braj’s culture. Along with this, the ancient manuscripts of the culture and literature of Braj are also published by the Sansthan. The Sansthan has established the ‘Brajlok Art and Craft Museum’, in which folk lifestyle, living and customs and traditions have been cherished within. There is constant movement of tourists in this. It is reputed as an important center of Braj culture. The Sansthan has a library of 15,000 reference books related to Braj culture, in which research students from India/abroad keep coming regularly. Tourists are also guided by the Sansthan. The Sansthan has an open air theater with a seating capacity of 300 spectators. Regular programs on folk and classical forms continue on this stage. Theater artistes, and artisans working especially in rural areas are encouraged. Under the aegis of the National School of Drama, a fifteen-day training in the arts of Braj was completed in Vrindavan by the Sansthan itself in 2014 under the direction of Mrs. Tripurari Sharma.